P is for Grant Page!
I've watched a lot of action adventure flicks in my time on this planet - good, bad, indifferent, domestic, foreign. I've enjoyed a lot of movies from Down Under - crazy stuff like Mad Max (and its sequels), The Man from Hong Kong, and Death Cheaters. The stunts in these movies are vibrant and visceral - really exciting action sequences for any fan of the genre. I've only discovered in the last few years that a great many of these stunts were performed by or coordinated by Grant Page - who I now realize is one of the greatest stuntmen in film history.
|Grant Page gets his kicks with Jimmy Wang Yu in The Man from Hong Kong (1975).|
Born in Adelaide South Australia in 1939, Grant Page got started in film doing stunts for a movie called Dragon Flies in its native land - but brought to America as The Man from Hong Kong. In addition to doubling lead Jimmy Wang Yu in several harrowing sequences, Grant Page also plays a bad guy in the film - a nameless assassin who takes out one of Wang Yu's contacts, then is pursued through a terrific chase sequence - all doing his own stunts.
|Page forgot sometimes that cars don't have wings. Mad Max (1979)|
From there Page became one of the nation's top stuntmen and stunt coordinators. He's lent his talents to films like Patrick (1978), Mad Dog Morgan, The Picture Show Man, City on Fire, Thirst, Death Ship, The Island (1980), Road Games, and The Pirate Movie.
|Suffering for his art...|
What I really like about Page is he is an all purpose utility stuntman - he doesn't only do one kind of stunt - he does them all. Fight scenes, high falls, car stunts, fire gags - the man seems to have never known fear in his life.
In fact, let's stick in a video clip - a three minute compilation of Grant Page stuntwork - incredibly impressive action - all under four minutes.
One great movie to see (if you can track it down) is Stunt Rock - director Brian Trenchard-Smith's blending of movie stunts with arena style theatrical rock n roll. In it Page plays himself - and he's pursued by a female investigative journalist wanting to know what would make a man want to set himself on fire and fall 80 feet into a lake. Interspersed with scenes from several of Page's movies are some all new stunts shot for Stunt Rock - and then all of that is mixed with a completely unrelated side plot featuring the rock group Sorcery - who liked to do magic illusions onstage while they performed. It's a truly awesome movie - and TCM occasionally airs it late on Friday nights.
Grant Page not only survived all the crazy things he's done in the name of stunts - he's still working as a stunt coordinator - with one of his upcoming releases being the 2013 remake of the 1978 movie he did uncredited stunts for - Patrick!
Check out some Grant Page when you can - he will get your heart racing!
I just minded your P's - so you mind the Q's and come back tomorrow, please! Until then, you Can Poke Me With A Fork, Cause I Am Outta Here!